by Clark A. Baldon
(Denver, CO 80224 USA)
Roy Arthur Accola was born 04-13-1919 and grew up on a farm East of Greeley Colorado.
He joined the Army 01-11, 1942.
He later applied for admission to the AAF and was accepted.
He did his Pre-flight School in Texas.
He then went to the W&B Flight School in Chickasha, OK.
He soled on 07-15, 1943.
He then went to twin engine school in 1943 at the Enid Army Flying School in Enid, OK.
He then was transferred to the Air Base in Salt lake City, UT
He was commissioned a 2nd LT on 01-7, 1944.
He was transferred from Salt Lake City, UT to Peterson Field in Colorado Springs, CO in Feb, 1944.
The crew was transferred to Topeka, KS on 05-06, 1944. Franklin Rimmerman was the Pilot and Roy was Co-Pilot. There the crew picked up a new B-24J. They flew this plane to Bari, Italy on 05-17-1944. His crew became part of the 513th Bomb Squadron, 376th Bomb Group. According to Ed Clendenin's records, this was not the plane that the crew flew in their missions.
The crew's 1st combat was on D-Day in the Normandy Invasion.
On the crew's 31st Mission on 08-15-1944 at approximately 0300 Hrs, their plane crashed on take-off. On the Official Crash report, the cause of the crash was Pilot error.
Thirty years later, by accident, my Aunt found out what appears to have really happened. An older loan officer in a banking institution saw her maiden name (Accola) on her and her husbands application for a house loan. As they kept talking, the crash incident came up. He paled and said, My God, I know about that. He then told how he was on the tribunal trial that heard the case of a 23 year professional Army Master Sgt. that was caught red handed tying hand grenades to the wheel gear while he was fueling the planes. Upon take-off, the wheels would retract and pull the pin on the grenade causing the plane to crash. He brought down several planes this way before being caught. The bank man said that the Sgt. was caught, tried, convicted and executed the same day. The Nazi's had got to him and was paying him money to bring down US planes.
I can find no records to substantiate this story. An acquaintance that was stationed at that air base in Nevada that doesn't exit who has a very high clearance also did major research and can find no records. The man who told my Aunt this story said that it was not unusual in war time for the pentagon to keep these kinds of stories hushed up so as not to get the public upset at the war effort...by now with all of the years gone by, it looks like only GOD knows for sure.
According to the crash report, their were 2 original members that were not on the plane when it went down. We know for sure that Howard Anderson was not in the crash. He actually came out to Colorado and visited with Roy's parents a few years later.
If anyone has any info concerning this post, please let me know! Thank You!!!
Thanks Ed for doing this site!!!
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The website 376bg.org is NOT our site nor is it our endowment fund.
At the 2017 reunion, the board approved the donation of our archives to the Briscoe Center for American History, located on the University of Texas - Austin campus.
Also, the board approved a $5,000 donation to add to Ed Clendenin's $20,000 donation in the memory of his father. Together, these funds begin an endowment for the preservation of the 376 archives.
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Liberando: Reflections of a Reluctant Warrior
376th Bomb Group Mission History
Ten Men, A "Flying Boxcar," and A War